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This is an issue that has been addressed many times by different people on various talk pages but it's never been resolved so I'm making this thread in the hopes that some sort of consensus can be found. I know Maxis/EA have never been very consistent when it comes to maintaining an official canon or a timeline but that doesn't mean this Wiki can't have consistent guidelines.

1. A lot of Sims from previous games have reappeared in The Sims 4 and for most of them the new information was added to the existing pages. This is true for the Goths, the Landgraabs, the Calientes, and Don Lothario, as well as the Newbie family, the Pleasants, and the Grunts. However, there are three noteable exceptions: Dustin Broke, Dirk Dreamer, and Holly Alto have seperate pages for The Sims 4. Shouldn't they be merged with the original pages? Especially since the articles are all very short and it would be consistent with the approach that has been taken with all the other returning Sims.

2. Then there is the case of Malcolm Landgraab. Currently, there is a page titled Malcolm Landgraab (The Sims 3) which has information from The Sims 3 (for PC and console) and The Sims 4. This is of course very confusing by itself but then there is a seperate article for the console games titled Malcolm Landgraab (console). Both articles are a complete mess and I would very much like to improve them but I'd need to know what information should be merged and what should be kept seperate. This suggestion from User:K6ka was pretty popular on the talk page:

Since this Malcolm Landgraab appears in more games and appears to be more prominent, perhaps we could do the following:

However, User:Auror Andrachome thought the pages should be kept seperate in which case I would suggest moving Malcolm Landgraab (The Sims 3) (the page that contains the information for The Sims 3 and The Sims 4) to Malcolm Landgraab and move the DAB page to Malcolm Landgraab (disambiguation).

3. There appear to be two alternate versions of the Newbie family. In one version, Bob Newbie is a white man with male-pattern hair loss and a full beard while in The Sims 2 console games, he is a black man with short dreadlocks, a soul patch, and glasses. Betty Newbie is a very casual and sporty in one version but she wears lots of make-up and jewelry in the other. The sidebar is also much longer than the article for both Bob and Betty. Maybe these articles should be seperated in Bob Newbie and Bob Newbie (The Sims 2 console) and the same for Betty.

Thank you for reading! I hope this isn't too incoherent and solutions for these issues can be found. —Gvaudoin 💬 23:00, March 3, 2019 (UTC)

DiscussionEdit

First off, I agree that there is a discrepancy in how we handle these instances. I agree that some unified solution would be ideal. But, as we've seen in other discussions, the "how" of implementing some unified solution is where we tend to get hung up.

There are a couple approaches that I've seen floated out there as potential solutions. The first is to state that TS4 exists in a separate timeline or an "alternate universe" to the other games. The outcome of this solution would be the splitting of pages for Sims that appear both in TS/TS2/TS3/TS console games and in TS4, into two separate pages for each "universe" or "timeline." The same would also apply to families that appear in both. The second solution is to simply continue as we've done, by combining all instances of a single Sim or family on the same page, regardless of "timeline," or even regardless of whether the characters are similar enough to convincingly be called one in the same. Another option is to implement a system of subpages or tabs, while keeping all instances of a Sim on the same page. And yet another option is to take the idea of splitting even further, by splitting a Sim's biography up for each separate game appearance (or perhaps each separate "generation" appearance, so that for instance, the Bella Goth that appears in The Sims base game for PC would share an article for the Bella Goth that appears in TS1-era console games).

I think there are many solutions to the problem, some of which are much more practical or technically feasible than others. But ultimately the big problem is landing on a solution that enough of the community can support. I think the idea up to now has been to allow the solution to present itself organically, but as that has not happened, it may be time for us to sit down and figure out just what we're trying to do. -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 01:15, March 4, 2019 (UTC)

I agree as well that some sort of ordering system would be very helpful. The The Sims 3 on Malcolm's page has been annoying me for a bit as well. I could see how a (Main universe) and (Alternative universe) could work, since I think that seperate pages for TS1, TS2, TS3, TS4, and even console pages would be unnecessary, especially since there are obvious connections between (mostly) TS1-TS3 and even console games. Then again I think that the The Sims 4 info on Simpages like those of Bella Goth (and even Malcolm Landgraab) are not contrary to their main universe counterparts (Because in a matter of fact they're still the 'same' person). It would be different for the very obvious different Holly Alto or the black Bob Newbie. So we could also base it on that Sims are quite obviously just not the same person, because of a very different appearance, very different personality or because they're stated (or not confirmed) to be the same person. DeSims (talk) 02:27, March 4, 2019 (UTC)
I agree with User:LostInRiverview that there are many different solutions to the problem and from my point of view there are pros and cons for all of them. But it's very hard for me and probably most casual editors to know wich ones can be implemented. One thing that has always bugged me for example is that a Sim like Goopy GilsCarbo, who is clearly meant to be the same character in every game he appears, has a different starsign in every game and has three different categories associated with him because of it. I'd love to be able to filter categories by game but I'm not sure if that's even something that could be done. Therefore, I feel like administrators would need to be the ones who come up with workable solutions and if there are multiple options see which one has the most support from the community.
How do you handle these things on the Dutch Wiki, User:DeSims? I never really saw the point of calling The Sims 4 an alternate universe since the original universe has too many inconsistencies already. Sims wer never exactly the same, just similar enough. I don't even think that TS4 Holly Alto is as different from TS3 Holly Alto as it's implied on the Wiki. With the Newbies it feels like an actual alternative universe though... —Gvaudoin 💬 16:32, March 9, 2019 (UTC)
Unfortunately we don't have a great system either yet on the Dutch Sims Wiki. The only example that is kind of different that comes in mind now is Malcolm Landgraab (The Sims 3) simply called Malcolm Landgraab, since he's obviously supposed to be one and the same Malcolms here (even though the TS4 Malcolm is an 'alternative universe Malcolm'). On the other hand we do have the Michael Bachelor (hidden). Nervous Subject (hidden), etc. pages. It's kind of a case by case scenario I gues... DeSims (talk) 02:08, March 18, 2019 (UTC)
Your approach seems very reasonable to me. Having seperate pages for these hidden characters makes perfect sense in my opinion as does having one page for all versions of Malcolm. I feel like it would be harder to add interwikis if these pages were seperated on the English Wiki. For example, if there were a Malcolm Landgraab (The Sims 3) page and a Malcolm Landgraab (The Sims 4) page on the English Wiki both of them could link to Malcolm Landgraab on the Dutch Wiki but you could only link back to one of the articles, right? I feel like I'm in favour of merging articles in most cases unless there are good reasons for seperation. It seems like the easiest solution to me but the most important thing would still be a consistant approach. —Gvaudoin 💬 21:21, March 18, 2019 (UTC)
Completely seperate pages for Sims that share the same background (for example Bella Goth (The Sims) and Bella Goth (The Sims 2)) sounds very useless to me, especially because you will just end up with a bunch of short articles (maybe not with Bella, but perhaps with Bob Newbie you would). I think also important connecting information between the games would get lost this way (or unnecessary duplicated). Like I said earlier, I think the easiest way would be a case to case scenario, assuming that 1 Sim should only have one page unless proven to be significantly different. Appearance could be one of those reasons, in-game mentions or confirmations by the Gurus.
If we talk about interwikis this would also save a lot of mess yes.. Although with The Sims 3 and The Sims 4 the Dutch wiki got a lot messier too, because several Sims from TS/TS2/TS3 appear with different names in later games. Different enough to kind of forget the connection unless you know that they are the same Sims in the English games. So has the Caliente family 3 diferent pages on the Dutch wiki, because all 3 households are different enough for their own page, or for people to look them up with their different names if they haven't played earlier games. So don't worry too much about the interwikis. EA messed that up for you already :') DeSims (talk) 23:15, March 25, 2019 (UTC)
I agree that separating pages for Sims that are meant to be the same character seems pretty pointless and the downsides would probably outweigh any benefits. A case by case scenario should work but there is never a lot of engagement on the talk pages. I really wish the cases I listed in my original post would be sorted out. —Gvaudoin 💬 23:53, March 25, 2019 (UTC)
Although Dustin and Dirk are questionable cases, I would suggest that they do remain seperate, since they do seem like different Sims (the most obvious case is Holly Alto (The Sims 4: Get Famous). Regarding Malcolm, I'd suggest to move Malcolm Landgraab (The Sims 3) and it's current info to Malcolm Landgraab and create a Malcolm Landgraab (disambiguation) for the thousand other Malcolms... DeSims (talk) 00:29, March 26, 2019 (UTC)
I think these kinds of discussions tend to fall apart, among other reasons, because we start talking about specific pages and whether or not those pages would need to be separated/combined/etc, rather than focusing on defining a standard for how we could judge these pages. I don't think the case-by-case idea is particularly good, since there will always be the potential for disagreement as to how different two instances of the "same" Sim really are, and whether those differences are significant enough to justify separate pages. I think the best approach would be to implement a guideline that is as straightforward as possible and where it's pretty easy to determine whether a given Sim meets the criteria for having its page split or not. -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 04:46, March 26, 2019 (UTC)
I agree that discussions tend to fall apart which is why I feel that administrators should be the ones to find a workable solution and suggest consistent guidelines. Or maybe ask for community input and have a vote when there are multiple proposals? —Gvaudoin 💬 19:53, April 17, 2019 (UTC)

I don't think Dustin, Dirk, and Holly should have their pages splitEdit

I think they should have one page with diff tabs for each "generation" they appear in. I see it as being similiar to MLP generations.

Maybe it could work like on the MySims wiki.

Nelly-is-best-girl (talk) 17:22, June 9, 2019 (UTC)

This idea seems worth considering imo. I quite like how the MySims Wiki handles this issue but I don't know if it's hard to do. —Gvaudoin 💬 17:53, June 9, 2019 (UTC)

Separating Sims per game/era Edit

I have been thinking about it for a bit recently, and I have actually changed my mind on what I said earlier. It might be interesting to look into seperating Sim pages either by era (all The Sims 1 + consoles, TS2,TSS + consoles etc.) or by game. Infoboxes tent to make pages really long while actual text on that page doesn't fill the page at all. I'm thinking of wikis/fandoms like The Walking Dead Wiki where they have seperate pages for the same people, but one is for the comics, one is for the tv series, one is for the video game, etc. I feel like this might be valuable for some Sims too, especially since the The Sims 4 universe shakes some things up. This would also solve A LOT of "are these Sims/families the same Sim/family or not"-problems. Thoughts? DeSims (talk) 20:48, June 10, 2019 (UTC)

I think that's a really great idea. If we have separate pages for the Get Famous versions of Dustin Broke, Holly Alto, and Dirk Dreamer, I see no reason why all Sims can't also have pages separated by game; even if they are obviously intended to be the same Sim.
Another reason I think this is because, as Gvaudoin pointed out, the timeline of the first three Sims games has countless inconsistencies; if you ask me, they could very well all be an "alternate universe" from each other. I really don't understand why TS4 is considered a special case. Mariaw (talk) 23:21, June 10, 2019 (UTC)
I'd like to look at this idea from a pro/con angle.
Pros to separating by game
  • Categories become more relevant and more useful. If a Sim has biographical details that contradict between two games, currently that Sim is placed into both categories. Splitting Sim pages by game would eliminate this contradiction, meaning that the Sim pages that appear in categories would be fully accurate.
  • Written details more closely tie into the infobox. Presently on many articles, the written text of the article doesn't visually align with the details in the infobox. Not to mention, our article text and infoboxes run out-of-order from each other, since our practice is to put TS3 information first in the written text (since TS3 is meant to be a prequel, and the article text is meant to be written in in-universe chronological order).
  • It solves the TS4 problem. That is, after all, the whole crux of this discussion anyways.
Cons to separating by game
  • Many, many new articles. Having more articles isn't by itself a bad thing, but consider that creating all these articles and curating content would take time and volunteer resources.
  • Separating page histories would be difficult (if not impossible). Standards mandate that we must attribute edits to the proper editor through the page history. If we end up splitting articles, it makes it difficult to ensure that all editors continue to have proper attribution, since one person's edits might be spread across multiple different pages. It may not be possible to do a clean split of the page history, since a single person may have edited information about different games all within the same single edit to the page.
  • Wiki links would need serious updating. Right now, if I link to Bella Goth, it pulls up her full biography. If we go through with this split, then every page that references her in regards to a specific game will have to be updated to link to the newly-split article. We'd also likely need to set up disambiguation pages for any Sim that appears in more than one title.
  • Sim pages would need to be updated if the Sim is re-introduced in later games. Right now, if a Sim that has up to now only appeared in one game ends up appearing in a second game, we simply edit the existing article to include information about their new appearance. Under this proposal, we would have to rename the original article and create a new article for the Sim's new appearance (also again running into problems with the point above).
I don't know that this list of pros/cons is conclusive, it's just what occurs to me upon thinking about it. I'm not sure where I land on this idea. Ultimately, it is *a solution* to this long-standing issue, but I'm not sure that it is the *best solution*. -- LostInRiverview talk · blog · contribs 01:26, June 11, 2019 (UTC)
I like your list LiR, and what I can conclude of it is that having seperate pages would probably create a lot of clearity and a better wiki, but will be a hell of a job; mostly adding a lot of new pages. Although it might create a bit more chaos while in the process I do think in the end it will result in a clearer wiki than it is now. We also wouldn't have to fix inconsitencies with game orders (is TS3 above TS or TS2, is TS before TS console or not, etc.) The same Sim (or the Sim with the same name) will be mentioned on the page (eg: for Bella Goth in The Sims 4, see Bella Goth (The Sims 4) or if it isn't sure a Sim with the same name is the same Sim or not: for the Sim with the same name in The Sims 4, see Holly Alto (The Sims 4: Get Famous). This is technically something that's not new and has been done before (like me example with Holly, that 'issue' was just never resolved, or Sims with the same name in The Sims 2. There could be a Bella Goth (disambiguation) page made, or simply a Bella Goth page with a list of all the Bellas (or both).
I wouldn't know how to solve your history issue, as I don't have enough knowledge of that, but seperating pages by era musn't be too difficult as most Sims that appear in multiple games have different infoboxes and info under The Sims 3 subtitles. Again: it would take a lot of work, but I do think it might be worth it. DeSims (talk) 16:56, June 14, 2019 (UTC)
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